Karnataka bandh call for statehood fails to evoke response

Life was normal in almost all parts of the north Karnataka region, but symbolic protests were held in all the districts.

Published: 02nd August 2018 09:19 PM  |   Last Updated: 02nd August 2018 09:19 PM   |  A+A-

Image for representational purpose. (Photo | Nagaraja Gadekal).


BENGALURU: A bandh call given by several outfits in 13 districts of north Karnataka today, demanding statehood for the region, failed to elicit any response.

Normal life was reported in all the districts with schools, colleges, commercial establishments and government offices functioning as usual, as also public transport, officials said.

Confusion persisted since last evening as 'Uttara Karnataka Pratyeka Rajya Horata Samiti' (North Karnataka Separate Statehood Protest Committee) had withdrawn the bandh call after their meeting with chief minister H D Kumaraswamy.

However, some other outfits, including the local Raitha Sangha (farmers union) that had supported the bandh call, decided to go ahead with the shutdown.

Various organizations from the Hyderabad-Karnataka region, the six districts in the north-east of Karnataka, had also opposed the statehood demand.

Life was normal in almost all parts of the north Karnataka region, but symbolic protests were held in all the districts, following which memorandums were submitted to Tahsildars or district administration, officials said.

The bandh was called by the outfits which alleged discrimination by successive governments towards the region.

Uttara Karnataka Pratyeka Rajya Horata Samiti also alleged discrimination in allocation towards the region in the budget presented by Kumaraswamy on July 5, and inadequate representation in the cabinet.

The Samiti representatives had on Tuesday met Kumaraswamy, who sought to mollify them by expressing his government's strong commitment for the region's development.

Kumaraswamy had said the state government was mulling shifting certain government offices to 'Suvarna Vidhana Soudha' at Belagavi, in an attempt to address alleged discrimination.

The bandh call had alsoresulted in political slugfest between Congress-JD(S) rulingcoalition and opposition BJP, with each blaming the other for instigating "separatist sentiments."

Reacting to the bandh, deputy chief minister GParameshwara said it was not successful as it lacked public support.

He urged political parties, including the BJP, not to use such issues for political reasons.

Parameshwara said all governments in the past, in theirown way, have worked for the development of north Karnataka and added that the present dispensation was "committed" to the region's development.



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